CASE STUDY: Advanced Workplace Associates
Advanced Workplace Associates is a global consultancy advising some of the world’s largest organisations with a particular focus on hybrid working. In the spring of 2020, as employers were adjusting to the impact of the first global Covid-19 lockdown, AWA saw an opportunity to learn from the most fundamental change in working practices in living memory, and approached The Nisse Consultancy to help raise its profile in national and broadcast media.
AWA was already working with a specialist communications agency, Magenta Associates, which had succeeded in establishing AWA’s expertise in trade media. TNC and Magenta quickly established a strong working relationship which resulted in excellent results for the first report they worked on together, with media coverage ranging from The Times, Financial Times and BBC to leading specialist media.
Over the next couple of years AWA’s reputation has been established within leading media, with managing director Andrew Mawson and head of research Karen Plum being approached directly to be expert commentators. This has been supported by further reports, commentary and op-eds, culminating in highly successful launch of the AWA Hybrid Index in August 2022. This research has appeared in all the major national media – The Times, Telegraph, Guardian, Financial Times, BBC (online, news and Radio 4) and Bloomberg - as well as in HR, property and sector specific outlets across the UK and US. This higher profile has driven an increased level of business enquiries for the consultancy.
CASE STUDY: 10,000 Black Interns
100 Black Interns is a project launched in August 2020 to address the chronic underrepresentation of black people in the fund management industry by offering at least 100 internships a year in frontline investment teams to black university students and graduates. Coordinated by Jonathan Sorrell, President of Capstone Investment Advisors, Dawid Konotey-Ahulu, co-founder of Redington and Mallowstreet, Wol Kolade, Managing Partner of Livingbridge, and Michael Barrington-Hibbert, founder and managing partner of Barrington Hibbert Associates, it secured the backing of 80 firms in the sector before going public.
Working with Gay Collins of Montfort, The Nisse Consultancy was able to create a major buzz around the launch, with articles in the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times, Daily Mail and Financial News as well as many leading specialist media. In addition Dawid Konotey-Ahulu was interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s flagship Today programme and Sky News about the programme. There was also a successful digital social media outreach led by Jacob Nomafo and Adaobi Adibe.
In the end 200 firms and over 1000 potential interns signed up, which led the founders to launch a massive expansion to more than 20 sectors, called 10,000 Black Interns. Again The Nisse Consultancy and Montfort helped with the launch, securing more high profile media coverage, and helping create a movement that is making a lasting change to potential prospects for young black people.
Our work won the PR Week Corporate City & Public Affairs Industry Initiative Award 2021 and was shortlisted for the Corporate Communications Diversity Initiative award. Dawid Konotey-Ahulu was awarded a CBE in the 2023 New Years Honours for services to Diversity and Inclusion.
CASE STUDY: Just Eat Takeaway
Since Autumn 2017, The Nisse Consultancy has provided media and presentation coaching services to Just Eat Takeaway, the FTSE 100 group that operates a leading global marketplace for online food delivery. This has included working with the senior leadership, including the UK managing director, on sensitive communications issues, preparing senior technical managers for TV interviews, and training a wide range of Just Eat executives for external media and presentation engagements. Among the communications challenges The Nisse Consultancy has helped address at such a diverse company is how to translate technical language and jargon into engaging stories for a lay audience, and how to enable team members from around the world to communicate effectively in English, even if it’s not their first language.
CASE STUDY: Meatless Farm
When entrepreneur Morten Toft Bech found his vegetarian wife bemoaning the lack of choice to feed the family, he decided to develop his own range of plant-based meat alternatives. The Nisse Consultancy started working with Meatless Farm shortly after it is retail launch in 2018 and in just 18 months helped it developing in from a small start-up in Leeds to a global business with offices in four continents, employing over 100 people, and selling in all four major UK supermarkets as well as Wholefoods Markets in the US and in many other territories from Australia to Sweden.
Once we started working together, we positioned Meatless Farm as the UK’s answer to American phenomena Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods. This soon prompted articles in the Financial Times, The Times, Wall Street Journal and The Guardian among others as well as frequent appearances on BBC TV and Radio. When the company launched a provocative advertising campaign, it was featured in page three lead in The Guardian which was the most read article in the paper’s online edition and was picked up by singer Ellie Goulding who shared it with her 14 million Instagram followers. A £24 million fundraising in September 2020, reported in The Times and other media, has positioned Meatless Farm for further growth.
CASE STUDY: HBOS Reading victims
It is always important to remember what the objective of a campaign is, and our work with the SME Alliance is an object lesson in retaining focus on the prize. When six bankers and advisors were sentenced to over 47 years in jail for their roles in a massive fraud centred on HBOS’ Reading branch, battle was joined to secure compensation for the scores of victims from Lloyds Banking Group, which now owns HBOS.
Gaining publicity was easy. Media outlets were queuing up to interview Nikki and Paul Turner, the husband and wife team who exposed the fraud. However, to win compensation the campaign needed to direct this publicity in the following ways:
To use the court of public opinion to pressurise Lloyds to settle without the need for litigation, which would hold up pay outs for many years;
To ensure the messaging emphasised the need for compensation by showing how much victims have suffered;
To target the media that Lloyds directors and shareholders read, in particular the Financial Times;
Ensure everything we said and did gave Lloyds the opportunity to settle with victims in a way that could enhance the bank’s reputation.
Working with the SME Alliance lobby group, a supportive legal team led by Nick Gould of gunnercooke, and other victims, we were able to generate over 100 pieces of media coverage, including features on all the major newspapers and TV news bulletins, File on Four on BBC Radio and a six-page feature in the Financial Times.
Lloyds set up a compensation scheme which started pay outs to victims in June 2017, and settled with Nikki and Paul Turner in November. However, frustration about how this scheme operated led SME Alliance to pressurise Lloyds into agreeing to an independent review of compensation payments, which ruled in December 2019 that Lloyds had to pay a lot more to victims.
CASE STUDY: Opsydia
Opsydia is a company providing laser security marking for diamonds, utilising unique technologies developed at the University of Oxford that can mark beneath the surface of the gems, so the marks can’t be polished off. It planned to unveil this technology to the world and announce a major partnership with a leading diamond producer, De Beers which also had a major announcement to make on the same day.
The Nisse Partnership was brought on board to help ensure Opsydia obtained the maximum coverage, critically with leading diamond industry and mining publications. Stories about De Beers’ announcement in Reuters and the Daily Telegraph gave prominent mentions to Opsydia, the BBC carried an interview with chief executive Andrew Rimmer and there were articles in international outlets including Rapaport Diamond Report and Mining. These have led to business enquiries from a host of potential customers and further media interest in the future development of Opsydia.
CASE STUDY: Jollibee
The Nisse Consultancy worked with award-winning consumer PR agency Munch on the launch of the Jollibee fast food brand in the UK. Jollibee is owned by Manila-listed Jollibee Foods Corporation which wanted to use the opening of its first restaurant in the UK to raise its profile with the financial media and the City. We placed a story about the launch with the Evening Standard and then helped make the best of an existing opportunity with the Financial Times, both delivering full page articles. This was followed up with interviews on the BBC’s flagship Today programme on Radio 4, CNBC, The Telegraph, Reuters, the Press Association and The Caterer. We also helped organise a charity partnership with Family Action, and secure the attendance of a number of key stakeholders at the Grand Opening. Jollibee described Munch’s campaign as “the best organised launch we have ever had.”
CASE STUDY: Iona
The Nisse Consultancy works with Taylor Keogh Communications to support low carbon sustainable fund manager Iona Capital. When Iona’s Leeming biogas plant in North Yorkshire struck a deal with the world-famous cheesemaker Wensleydale Creamery to turn its whey permeate into gas, we saw this as an excellent opportunity to deliver a national media story to build Iona’s reputation. Working with the team at Iona, and with Wensleydale, we developed the narrative and offered it as an exclusive to The Observer. It ran the story as a page lead, focusing on the angle of cheese fans Wallace & Gromit. We sent the story to the national media on the Sunday, and the trade media on Monday. It gained significant follow including page 1 of the Daily Star, page 3 of The Sun, BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC TV Look North and multiple specialist media. We followed this up with a profile of Iona co-founder Mike Dunn in the Yorkshire Post. On the back of this initiative Iona Capital have received a number of enquiries from additional feedstock suppliers and are optimistic they will generate further contracts.